sreda, 28. december 2011

First day of winter

Ah winter, thought it will never come to Vipava valley. Today it was a sunny day

again, lots of Italians showed up at take off but the inversion just did not let us fly normally.
A true winter kind of conditions :) We are too spoiled, so then we argue when we get one day that looks like flyable but in the end it is not :)
There is a payback time coming for all the fun we had past months as most of the hang gliding caravan is down under at pre-Worlds in Australia, Forbes.
We are getting great photos already from Zhenya, Jamie is having her Spring break with guys at Warren windsports, Corinna is also down there with Timezone team and our Polona is coming from New Zealand to help only Slovenian at the comp now Primoz Gricar.
Wish them all long and safe tasks :) I will be crying at home :D

četrtek, 15. december 2011

Lanzarote wrap up

Back in grey Slovenia where it is raining like h...

With the glider we survived the trip back for what I am really happy that glider survived the hostile environment of Lanzarote island and plane flying.

The organisation of Juaki and Benito was splendid again. This is the perfect way of keeping things simple and effective, running the comp like they do. Of course it helps a lot with relaxed pilots in the comp but I know Juaki from European champs in 2010 where he and the team did a good job to.
They helped me a lot as I was with out transport with out knowledge of where and how to get the place to sleep but they did it all for us pilots. 3 rented vans for everyone and nice discount on sleeping at Sands beach resort made problems with this things disappear. Thanks to the team for that.

Flying here is special. Only 30 to 50 km tasks but you get all of the obstacles you get on big tasks. Winds are high all the time so you may drift a lot with the thermals which I had to take more patiently after 2 days of mistakes. The ground is black and red with huge volcanic craters that make you feel like on the moon while you fly over them. The El Mirador flying was also something special to me. Over the ocean and back over one of a kind beach that stops with 700m cliff. I have to thank to part of AUT team for driving me around on days after the comp. Thank you ;)

I also had my first real gaggle flying with my new Moyes Rs 3.5 and have to say that I loved every moment of flying with it. After about 15 hours on it I feel like I fly with it for years. Mixture of relaxed flying and a really good confidence in thermal abilities of the glider is a hell of a ticket for hardly awaited new season in 2012. Really really looking forward to it.

For me it is March that Aeros Winter race is coming, for many others it is a long way down under to Australia for Pre-Wrolds in Forbes. 100 pilots are coming from around the world to compete few days after New years eve in the area that will hold World champs in 2013.

Here is an album of pictures that I have made during my stay in Lanzarote with my best travelling companion Nokia N8 ;)

ponedeljek, 12. december 2011

Cheating Famara

Since there was no competition any more, I was in deep search of how to get the footage that I need to have from this "one of a kind" island. Somehow Famara ridge with the West wind did not wanted to show to us, but we made a trick yesterday.
Austria and part of German team kindly took me with them to the El Mirador
take off on very North side of the island.
This is where the flight from Famara ends with the ridge. The amazing colours that are here on this side made us rig the gliders fast. Take off full of rocks, landing, hmm ,yp down there somewhere but that was a thing to think about when we go down.
Smooth air, really smooth air, we did some low passes with Seppi and my Nokia N8 finally got to see the blue ocean, finally the almost right conditions to have a proper video.
Lots of fun in the air, with close flying, looking at the clear blue ocean, watching thousands of seagulls bellow made the day worth of having it on video.
Today looks about the same, so we might do it all over again :)
Tomorrow winter will touch our skin again as I fly back to Munchen.

nedelja, 11. december 2011

Last task Lanzarote


I got my energy back to about 70% this morning and felt ok for a flight. IT is easier here as the tasks are more shorter, it would be definitely more difficult to have long races. Yet, don`t underestimate the flying here, so much tactic flying at just 30 to 50 km you wont get anywhere.
Some of the Austrian team have left already today as they had a plane back.
We rigged the gliders on Mala take off again with very low cloudbase. The task was again to Saint Bartolome. I took the second start gate and was with the first gaggle in 20 minutes. Really felling good for a good result I had to kiss the ground after flying to St Bartolome. No one made it to the goal today, I ended 6th for the day, Seppi Salvenmoser won the Canary open in front of Dietmar Tschabrun and Lucio Neli. Moyes gliders on first three places..

sobota, 10. december 2011

4,5,6th day

Back with my powers so I am able to write again. 4th day was cancelled

where we where at La Asomada take off and it was to stable for 60 pilots to fly the task. Next day it was the same but we took the advantage of the wind and did a few flights with top landings. Good for filming as I was able to change the camera view more times in one day. Quite rough conditions in the air as you would expect smooth ridge soaring.
In the evening all the fun began. We went with part of AUT team to pizza. I came back to the hotel and felt like I am pregnant. Ok, too much pizza I would say, but evening revealed what happened to me.
All night hugging the toilet, next morning I leave no chance

for flying and went up with the guys praying that the task wont happen. I sleep the whole day in the van trying not to think about the pain :=
Some medicine in the evening and today I am feeling better. I went under the magic 70kg edge I think.
Looks like Mala again today. Lets hope for a good one.

P.s. Manfred Trimmel is making the same story as I have done yesterday.

sreda, 07. december 2011

Timezone UTC 00:00

Yesterday I was doing my home work in the morning, home work that you start to do with joy. Back
in Germany before I started my trip down here, I got a news that I am expected in the Timezone team. You can find Timezone link under my sponsor section on the right side of the site.
I am truly honoured to be in the team of such a great company and be accompanied with such a great athletes as two hang gliding World champions and many more overall great personalities in our sport.

As for Lanzarote today, it looks like a new take off will be taken somewhere else as the wind turned more to the E. Looks like really no Famara flying for us this year. But, we never know.

torek, 06. december 2011

Task 3 at Mala take off

Another nice day at Mala take off today. The sky looked better then all days
so they called up a 50 km task. Almost the same as yesterday just on different point outside in Mala flats. I finally got myself in the right mode where I was able to watch the game from above all the time. As soon as we left Mala take off the struggle for the thermals started again. I did the cloudbase together with Bob Baier and then it was a gamble out to the flats. After San bartolome most of the pilots landed while few of us struggled in the drift of the wind. Thermal stoped so I had to make a choice where to go, while not having a clue which is the best way over vulcanic hils to the goal. I left one thermal in hope that wind and the hill will be a perfect combunatiin to get to the goal but I was wrong. I driffted around the hill and soon realised that I have to land as I saw nice wires just about 50m away so there was a turn and landing. This hiw you fly here, until you´re not doomed with 5m of height you might get a ticket back up.
Landed ok, Seppi came in behind in few minutes making a bit more km then I did.

I had quite a walk down to the civilization from the moon type area, but like that you get to see paces you would never have.
Looks like we will fly all days, hope for another good one tomorrow.

ponedeljek, 05. december 2011

Second task at Mala, Lanzarote

Picture from Bob Baier


First day when I felt like I am in summer again. Shorts, t-shirt was enough to

finally feel that I am out of the winter for few days. Amazing how body needs one day to react to the changes. I am sure it will react faster when I come back :)

A bit more windy day took us again to the Mala take off. Sunny sky, stronger wind, looked like we can make a longer task. 45 km south, with a bit of zig-zaging at Mala flats.
The air was a bit more lively today. Felt like it is going to be easier but as soon as we left Mala area the sky turned blue and there was no good signs to get a decent lift. I landed on half way with many others, I think 7 made it in. I tell you, it is not nice to fly behind a plant of wind turbines :D

A lot of Spanish guys made it in, Manfred Trimell made it in fast again, after yesterdays second place. We will see what the scores will be tomorrow. You can see the scores at their web page.

Marcelo from Brasil made a way back from 5 meters above the ground, it is amazing what you can do if you are able to soar the vulcanic hills, yesterday I stretched my flight with them for many km. Quite a lot landing fields in this area, all do it is good to look for dark spots where they use the ground for some plants and with that they have to remove some rocks. Otherwise it is like a knife land, rocks like blades, cactuses... Sometimes it is not good to look down :)

For next days they say stable, more stable, so my guess is we will be doing same home work every day. Well at least I know what is behind the hill now :D First day I had no clue where am I going, I saw the Famara ridge which I knew from videos otherwise it was just a play with coordinates on my GPS.

Tomorrow is another day.

nedelja, 04. december 2011

Mala

This morning was overcasted with strong winds. I woke up a bit late so I rushed to
get the glider together, find Juaki for transport e.t.c. Breakfast had to wait for today as it was a rush over since I opened my eyes.
We went to the bar where the first briefing was made. We went up to the Mala take off, where it was forecasted for wind to to drop down during the day. Well the wind was in the end too light. Mixture of wind and rain did not made anyone rush to the sky, those 3 that did payed it with a bomb out landing just 130 m lower from the take off.
The sky started to clear up slowly and suddenly we where up in strong thermal attacking the second start gate. Funny to fly between turnpoints for only few minutes as they where spread across the flat in front of take off. It all looked really easy until the time came to get the real height and fly back to San Bartolome. I had a hard time finding the decent lift which I got after coming back to the take off area. It looked like it will be a glide to the goal but I, yet again, went out of the thermal in hope that cloud street will work. Nope...
I was jumping then from vulcanic hill to hill, scraping one and another, until I finally landed 2 km short of goal. Looks like 9 made it in. Just when will I get my lesson learned about this very end patience things :)

Tomorrow looks like the same day as today.

sobota, 03. december 2011

Robbed

I could say like that :/
I really hate it when you come to a place where you need to pay for the WiFi spot. And here they took even a step further, 25 € I had to pay to have 1 week of the line to tell about their place how cool it is e.t.c...!
All of this to have this page running and make my boos happy about the work I can do via on-line. But.. Lets go to the bright side of the news :)

Yesterday I drove to Reginas place to sleep over for the flight today. I ate two plates of salad and pasta that Primoz and Regina prepared, amazing what the flavours can do to your memory :) I felt like back in the summer again.
Primoz took me to the airfield and I was straight in before the gate wit Dietmar,

Austrian pilot drinking an easy coffee and chatting about our first experience with flight to Lanzarote.
My stiff box flew trough the door of the baggage place which made me think why it is much better to have the glider in the box then just rolled in to the foam.
They took me from the airfield to the Sands beach hotel where we are staying for the rest of the stay here.
I got a retractable bed for two :) But however only with the sheets with out a blanket so we will see how the night is going to look like.

The woman promised it is going to be prepared but... :)
After the waypoints upload we got a barbecue at the sea sight with great food. Never ever had a meal like that in the comp and we payed 60 € for the 7 day comp. Makes u think about the high prices we are paying for at every comp and not getting back much from it....

Juaki, the European champs organiser is here running things again and he said we fly tomorrow. Not Famara but the other part of the island.. Does not look for the great Famara in next days but we hope for the best.

četrtek, 01. december 2011

Famara, Lanzarote

I am counting down the hours to the start of my trip to Canary island Lanzarote.

The idea was growing for already two years now yet it never came to the point of realization.
Magic videos that where coming from the Famara ridge where just calling for an adventure with camera on board. Nokia came here with help, so now I am here, after months of preparation and lots of help by friends on organizing the trip, packed for the trip down there. I will be filming there the event and flying with N8 and hopefully produce enough great footage for a decent Lanzarote hang gliding movie.

I did my first short packing few days ago, Rs seems to be really easy glider to handle this

things. Few tips from my English friend Carl and so the glider was packed in a box that fits just to the size of the Rs. Stiff box cooled down my nerves a bit about aeroplane travelling, but with that box I am very much on the edge of weight allowance.

Why right now? There is a competition in that period 15th open de Canarias de Ala Delta . Combining the trip with a competition in the middle of winter here feels like a best choice. I had a lot of flying past two months and am really looking forward to do my first comp on Litespeed Rs.

Tomorrow I am on my way to Munich and on Saturday I should be repacking my glider at Sandsbeach restort hotel. Spring here we come! :D

Here is a video from Robert that shows the kind of flying we should get there